The Washington Post reports that 57,000 federal workers are currently being paid not to work and the cost to taxpayers is $775 million. For at least a month, and at times longer, these bureaucrats are on full salary while they sit at home waiting to learn if their misbehavior will cost them their job, or not:
During a three-year period that ended last fall, more than 57,000 employees were sent home for a month or longer. The tab for these workers exceeded $775 million in salary alone.
The extensive use of so-called administrative leave continues despite government personnel rules that limit paid leave for employees facing discipline to “rare circumstances” in which the employee is considered a threat. The long-standing rules were written in an effort to curb waste and deal quickly with workers accused of misconduct.
And the comptroller general, the top federal official responsible for auditing government finances and practices, has repeatedly ruled that federal workers should not be sidelined for long periods for any reason.
The Post goes on to point out that while these bureaucrats are sitting home enjoying pay and benefits most of the taxpayers who pay their salaries can’t dream of, they are also accruing “pension earnings, vacation and sick days, and moved up the federal pay scale.”
Of course this never happens in the private sector where business owners who live in the real world are either dealing with their own money or are accountable to shareholders.
Why would anyone in the federal government care about wasting almost a billion dollars of someone else’s money?
When federal government bureaucrats dishonestly whine about budget cuts keeping them from doing their primary job, like finding a Ebola vaccine, the reason that falls on deaf ears is due to the fact that most Americans know the government has more than enough money to do the job expected from it. The problem is unforgivable waste and greed that creates an elite government class that will never be sated.
John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC